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Steatite/Epoxy Composites for Restoration Works Through a Statistical Mixture Design Methodology

Authors
  • Robinson, Antonio Aparecido Alves
  • Julio, Cesar dos Santos
  • Kurt, Strecker
  • Tulio, Hallak Panzera
  • Robson, Bruno Dutra Pereira
Journal
Journal of Building Material Science
Publisher
Bilingual Publishing Co
Volume
1
Issue
1
Identifiers
DOI: 10.30564/jbmr.v1i1.546
Source
Bilingual Publishing
Keywords
License
Green

Abstract

Currently many works of art made of soapstone and recognized as cultural patrimony of humanity are in an advanced stage of degradation. Hence, it is necessary to interrupt this process and recover the deteriorated parts. Composite materials consisted of steatite particles and epoxy polymer are designed and characterised for their application in the repair of sculptures made of soapstone. The material applied in restorations should provide coloration and texture similar to soapstone besides structural requirements. The degree of similarity of the artificial material to the rock is enhanced by the proper selection of the particle size range and the increase of steatite incorporation in the composites. A statistical methodology based on the mixture design is used to optimize the relative amount of three particle size fractions of steatite particles in order to maximise the proportion of the dispersed phase in the composites. The maximum particle packing density (1.50 g/cm³) is obtained for a ternary mixture, composed of 62% of coarse particles (1.18 mm - 0.60 mm), 6% of medium sized particles (0.60 mm - 0.30 mm) and 32% of fine particles (0.30 mm - 0.15 mm). In this manner, the fabrication of composites based on an epoxy polymer matrix with 70wt% of incorporated steatite particles has been possible, increasing the maximum amount by 10% as used in previous works.

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